Warning: Personalities for Sale. All the World’s a role. In a world of brainsuckers and bodysnatchers, you can’t take anything for granted. Not even your own identity. When Marva, a struggling Method actress, wakes up in a hologram pool in an exclusive priv club with fancy new clothes and plenty of money, she knows something is strange. When a memory of a murder starts tugging at her, she knows something is very strange, and that she’d better find out whose life she’s living. Fast. Pursued by assassins from a mysterious Escort Service and renegade mind-pirates of every description, Marva must venture into the seamy Downs to find out who wrote the script of the most difficult role of her career. Winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award for best novel, 1995
GENOCIDE – IN THE NAME OF LOVE Across the planet, only a handful of giant, overcrowded, doomed cities exist – cities like Norcal, where multiple marriages are recommended and drug-taking is encouraged. Across the planet, everyone waits for the reclamation of a lost technology that can save them. Everyone, that is, except for the members of the Order of St Jerome in Norcal. The Order of St Jerome believes in peace, in morality, in two-person marriages and old-fashioned values. The trouble is, in the name of love the Order of St Jerome has decided to sacrifice the Earth…
Somewhere in a far galaxy a being inconceivably alien is surging tumultuously from an unimaginable womb. In a solitary prison cell on the Underworld, the vast prison-satellite in perpetual Earth-orbit, Terra Viridian is tormented by a vision, an imperative which has already driven her to an insane bloodletting. On an Earth embalmed in peace by a ubiquitous bureaucracy, the Magician weaves his musical spells and tried to close his mind to the thoughts of others. – just three links in a chain stretching across space and time towards a testing as awesome as it is unpredictable.
Summer 1971. A marvellous spell of weather, idyllic in its warmth. But new sun-spots had appeared; and with their appearance came a significant increase in the suicide rate. The wonderful summer continued for a decade: simultaneously Radiant Suicide reached endemic proportions, the only people to escape its effects being the supposed transnormals, the obsessionals, the eccentrics and the psychopaths. These were to be the only remnants of the ancient ‘homo sapiens’ . . .
Once the city of Carrig stood supreme on this planet that had been settled by space refugees in the distant, forgotten past. From every corner of this primitive lost world caravans came to trade – and to view the great King-Hunt, the gruesome test by which the people of Carrig chose their rulers. Then from space came new arrivals. And with them came their invincible death guns and their ruthless, all-powerful tyranny. Now there would be no King-Hunt in Carrig, or hope for the planet-unless a fool-hardy high-born named Saikmar and a beautiful Earthling space-spy named Maddalena, could do the impossible . . . (First published 1969)
From the SF Gateway, the most comprehensive digital library of classic SFF titles ever assembled, comes an ideal sample introduction to the fantastic work of Edmund Cooper. A respected critic and writer, whose work spanned four decades, Cooper began publishing SF in the 1950s and often portrayed a bleaker view of the future than many of his contemporaries. Cooper’s works tended to depict unconventional heroes facing unfamiliar and remote environments – often in post-apocalyptic settings. This omnibus contains three titles that have been out of print for many years: THE CLOUD WALKER; ALL FOOLS’ DAY and A FAR SUNSET.
Curtis MscKinnon is an intemperate, naïve fool. Sure of his invulnerability as an American expatriate, he comes to Borneo to play at being disreputable. His illusions and charm make him a dangerous man: soon enough, he is in trouble and forced to hide in the jungles of Kalimantan. He discovers a drug once used to the Punan Dayak, a lost race remembered as ‘the dream wanderers’. Seribu aso does not, however, alter the perceptions of only the user. It changes the concrete reality of the land itself. MacKinnon has awoken the spirits of Kalimantan, the guardians of an unspoilt land. And he has no idea how powerful they are… With its echoes of Altered States and Heart of Darkness, Kalimantan has all the enthralling dark magic and superb story-telling that have made Lucius Shepard one of the most acclaimed fantasists today.
From the SF Gateway, the most comprehensive digital library of classic SFF titles ever assembled, comes an ideal sample introduction to the compelling work of Pat Cadigan, two-times winner of the ARTHUR C. CLARKE AWARD. Pat Cadigan has been dubbed ‘the Queen of Cyberpunk’ but her novels defy such narrow categorisation. In addition to winning two ARTHUR C. CLARKE AWARDs and a WORLD FANTASY AWARD, she has been nominated for the HUGO, NEBULA and PHILIP K. DICK AWARDs and garnered praise from such genre heavyweights as Neil Gaiman, William Gibson and Bruce Sterling. Few writers are as adept at facing the onrushing near-future as Pat Cadigan, and this volume perfectly showcases that skill, featuring TEA FROM AN EMPTY CUP, PHILIP K. DICK AWARD-finalist MINDPLAYERS and the ARTHUR C. CLARKE AWARD-winning FOOLS.
Mars, 600 years in the future, is dying. Five hundred years after the Chinese conquered the Red Planet, the great work of terraforming is failing. The human-machine Consensus of Earth had persuaded the AI Emperor to follow the Golden Path into a vast virtual reality universe, leaving behind an ungoverned planet swept by hunger riots and the beginnings of civil war. Enter Wei Lee, a lowly itinerant agricultural technician: rock ‘n’ roll fan, dupe, holy fool – and unlikely Messiah. After stumbling on an anarchist pilot hiding near the wreckage of her spacecraft, he’s drawn into a revolutionary plot that has been spinning for decades. With the help of a ghost, the broadcasts of the King of the Cats, a Yankee yak herder, and a little Girl God, Lee travels across the badlands, swampy waterways and vast dust seas to a showdown at the summit of the biggest volcano in the Solar System. Not even the God-like Consensus can predict the outcome of his struggle to define his own destiny . . . Epic in scope, Red Dust’s spectacular, fast-paced story brilliantly brings to life the planet that has captured our imagination like no other.